The Future of Post-16 Qualifications: Ufi's consultation response

The UK Parliament's Education Select Committee is currently examining how effectively post-16 qualifications prepare young people for the world of work.

Ufi have submitted evidence to the inquiry highlighting the importance of technology and vocational education with specific reference to assessment, access and accreditation.

You can download Ufi's full response and read the Executive Summary below.

The UK’s education system will be failing us all unless it places more focus on the importance of vocational education and the technology that supports it to improve opportunities and outcomes for learners, employers, and society as a whole.

Rebecca Garrod-Waters, CEO, Ufi VocTech Trust

Executive Summary

  1. The future of the UK’s education system needs to be considered in its entirety.
    The importance of a high calibre and digitally advanced post-16 education system, which has at its core vocational and informal learning, must not be overlooked.
  2. Providing the right skills and qualifications in an effective and cost-efficient manner is critical for UK competitiveness and productivity.
    The digital tools and technology that Ufi VocTech Trust supports present an effective way to develop and
  3. Technology that enables learning and assessment must be embedded throughout vocational education.
    Contextual learning, digital credentialing and innovative assessment methods will be central to both re-skilling the existing workforce and developing the skills of future generations.
  4. The UK’s education system must integrate the importance of vocational education and the potential for technology to improve outcomes for learners, employers, and the UK as a whole.

Key points

  • Technology allows for better assessment by allowing qualifications to adapt and provide students with new and effective methods of assessing their skills. When a qualifications pedagogical approach has technology at its core, the bespoke problems of an industry or area of study can be addressed with a more adaptable and suitable result achieved for learners.
  • Very few learners can demonstrate their skills through one means of testing and because technology offers a greater range of options it can provide better access to all qualifications. While the circumstances of each learner and area of study are specific, technology has the capacity to overcome challenges of access in general.
  • Post-16 qualifications need to maintain their relevance to learners, and technology has the capacity to create a system of better accreditation which can increase the number of ways a student can prove what they have learnt. Technology makes accreditation more relevant to learners and their future employers, all whilst maintaining the highest levels of security.


  1. Focus on vocational education and the future workforce – bring together industry and education through better use of digital technology to develop and deploy the post-16 qualifications and vocational skills the UK needs.
  2. Mandate some degree of digital delivery in all vocational and adult learning, with recognition and reward for the adoption of technologies that improve learner outcomes.
  3. Ensure that teacher training and CPD is designed to equip the education workforce with the understanding and skills to utilise technology that supports learners.

To discuss Ufi's consultation response please contact Josh Smith, Ufi Public Affairs Officer at